Phone off hook

Let’s get this party started with the story that started it all, shall we? This post originally appeared on The Toast.

It starts with a phone call.

You won’t call them. They’ll call you. When your phone rings, you’ll pick it up; but before you have the chance to speak, a voice will come through the earpiece: “Welcome to Boothworld Industries. My name is Samantha and I will be your operator for today. Name?”

Your operator’s name may or may not be Samantha; whoever it is, it will be an innocuous name. Forgettable.

It sounds like a customer service call, although you can’t recall having had any dealings with a company called “Boothworld Industries” before. Did Time Warner start outsourcing their Internet services? Unlikely. You consider asking your “operator” — whatever that means — to add you to their DNC list.

You don’t, though. You’ll admit it: You’re curious. Boothworld Industries already knows who you are, they tell you. So  you’ll give the name of someone you know — an old flame, an ex-friend, your next-door neighbor. You’ll say something like, “Nathan Miller.” Why? You have no idea. Why not?

“Nathan Miller,” your operator will repeat back to you. “Remodeling is scheduled for December 9. Would you like to reschedule?” Again: Why not? You’ll reply in the affirmative. You will hear typing on the other end for a moment — heavy typing, pounded out with a heavy hand — before your operator tells you, “I have a Tuesday appointment available. Will that work?” Again, you’ll reply in the affirmative.

The last thing your operator will ask is, “Would you like a courtesy call?” A courtesy call? That sounds nice. For the third time and final time, you’ll say yes. “Wonderful,” your operator will tell you. “We at Boothworld Industries say thanks and welcome to the club. You have a marvelous day.”

On Tuesday, you will regret your request for a courtesy call. “This is Samantha with Boothworld Industries,” your operator will say when you answer. “Your courtesy call begins now.”

What follows is several minutes of Nathan Miller’s voice pleading and begging before being choked off into a wheeze. A slight rustling; more wheezing; and finally, silence. A new voice will then appear on the line. “The scheduled work has been completed,” it will say. “We at Boothworld Industries say thanks and welcome to the club. You have a marvelous day.”

So that’s what remodeling is.

Keep reading…

[Photo via]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s